Arts

Monkey See
4:22 pm
Wed November 26, 2014

Christmas Bells Are Ringing, And Cable Holiday Movies Are Unrelenting

Candace Cameron Bure and David O'Donnell star in Hallmark's Christmas Under Wraps, which airs Saturday on The Hallmark Channel.
Fred Hayes Crown Media

Originally published on Wed November 26, 2014 6:36 pm

On today's All Things Considered, my great dream came true: Audie Cornish and I sat down for a chat about Hallmark/Lifetime/UP movies of the holiday season. Do people really watch them? What are they about? Can they save Christmas? You may have read my story a couple of weeks back about being busted watching these movies, so you know that I mean it when I say I watch them and I don't judge.

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The Salt
10:19 am
Wed November 26, 2014

For Native Alaskans, Holiday Menu Looks To The Wild

Akutaq or agutak — also known as Eskimo ice cream — is a favorite dessert in western Alaska. It's made with berries and frothed with fat, like Crisco.
Al Grillo AP

When Americans sit down to their Thanksgiving meal, most tables will feature traditional fare: turkey, mashed potatoes, cranberries. But should you be looking for a different kind of holiday meal, head for rural Alaska.

That's where Nellie Gamechuck lives, in a village squeezed between tundra and a bend in the river in the southwest part of the state. Ask her what's for dinner on Thanksgiving, and she opens up the deep freeze. "Walrus meat, moose meat," she says. Digging down through the layers, she reaches the dessert level: salmonberries.

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The Two-Way
9:14 am
Wed November 26, 2014

Book News: Despite The Tumult, Ferguson Library Keeps Its Doors Open

Youths walk past a mural calling for peace in Ferguson, Mo., on a building up the street from the city's police department a day before the grand jury decision was announced.
David Goldman AP

The daily lowdown on books, publishing, and the occasional author behaving badly.

A grand jury decision announced Monday not to indict police officer Darren Wilson in the fatal shooting of Michael Brown was preceded by a wave of shuttered doors in Ferguson, Mo. Expecting an eruption of protests over the decision, the city's public schools and many public services quickly declared they would be closed on Tuesday.

The Ferguson Public Library, however, remained open.

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Book Reviews
6:03 am
Wed November 26, 2014

North-Of-The-Border Horror In 'Go Down Together'

Originally published on Wed November 26, 2014 1:41 pm

"There is a town in north Ontario / With dream comfort memory to spare," sings Neil Young on the 1970 CSNY track "Helpless." "Helpless" also happens to be the title of the tenth and final story in Gemma Files' new collection, We Will All Go Down Together. The similarity isn't a coincidence; Files quotes Young's lyrics directly in another story, "Strange Weight." And the whole volume revolves around a fictional town in northern Ontario called Dourvale — a village which, like the town in Young's song, has dreams and memories to spare.

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The Salt
3:16 am
Wed November 26, 2014

Gluten-Free? Vegan? Thanksgiving Recipes For Alternative Diets

Baked Squash Kibbeh: Middle-Eastern kibbeh is a finely ground combination of beef or lamb, bulgur and onions either formed into balls and deep-fried or pressed into a pan and baked. For a vegetarian version of this flavorful dish, why not pair butternut squash with the warm spices?
Steve Klise Courtesy of America's Test Kitchen

Originally published on Wed November 26, 2014 11:05 am

It's like the start of a bad joke: a vegan, a gluten-free and a paleo walk into a bar — except it's your house, and they're gathered around your Thanksgiving table.

More and more Americans are passing on gluten — some for medical reasons, most by choice. Others are adopting diets that exclude meat, or insisting on the kinds of unprocessed foods that early man would have hunted and gathered.

All of this is a challenge to the traditional Thanksgiving feast.

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